PHP, the programming language that has been declared dead more times than a cat has lives, is still very much alive and kicking. Despite what some elitist developers may say, PHP is not going anywhere anytime soon.
Despite all the naysayers constantly predicting its demise, PHP continues to chug along, powering some of the biggest websites on the internet.
Let’s start by taking a look at the statistics. According to W3Techs, PHP is currently used by 78.9% of all websites with a known server-side programming language. That’s a pretty impressive number, considering that PHP has been around since 1995. To put it in perspective, that’s longer than some developers have been alive. And the reason why it has been around for so long is that it just keeps getting better.
Then you have the big players. Facebook, one of the most visited websites in the world, uses PHP. Wikipedia, the go-to source for all knowledge, also uses PHP. And let’s not forget about WordPress, the content management system that powers over 40% of all websites on the internet. These websites aren’t small, insignificant players. They’re major players in their respective industries and rely on PHP.
I know Facebook (or Meta) has instigated initiatives to increase the performance of PHP, including Hack, but that’s because they face scaling problems that most developers could only dream of.
The fact that these companies still use PHP but also contribute patches and updates has kept the language alive, even as trendier languages like Go or Rust have popped up.
But it’s not just about the big players. PHP has been around for over two decades and has a huge user base. It’s not just a popular language with big corporations and enterprises. Small businesses, independent developers, and hobbyists all use PHP as well. And it’s not just because they’re used to it or because they don’t know any better. PHP has stood the test of time because it’s a solid, stable language that’s easy to learn and use.
And let’s not forget about all the modern features that have been added to PHP in recent years. Things like static types, union types, and other new features have made PHP a much more powerful language. The composer package manager, tooling, and frameworks like Laravel and Symfony have made it even more accessible for developers.
Some might argue that PHP is outdated and that there are newer, better languages. But the truth is that PHP is still relevant and is not going anywhere. Sure, there are other languages that are more popular or trendy right now, but PHP has a proven track record, and it’s not going anywhere.
So, to all the PHP haters out there, I say this: PHP may not be the newest or the coolest kid on the block, but it’s still here, and it’s still kicking. And it’s not going anywhere anytime soon.
Would you use PHP for new development?
I never stopped using it for new development. If you’re doing WordPress you’re using PHP, but I also use Laravel sometimes too. Most of the time I’ll opt for Node.js.